July 21st, 2009
Sunday, July 12th, 2009
While the previous two days had already blown my mind, it seems as though the best had been saved for last. The day’s talks started with Collin T. Miller giving us his thoughts on how we can move away from text as the primary way of encoding computer programs and move towards other encodings that more closely resemble the domains in which we are trying to solve computing problems. While I found his ideas interesting, I don’t think I can agree with his notion that text should be replaced as the primary encoding for programs. I think that text is an excellent way of representing computer programs: it is concise, easy to manipulate, and easy to parse.
July 12th, 2009
Edit: In my haste to post my write-up of these first two days of the conference, I didn’t do much in the way of linking and I forgot to write about one of the coolest things that happened on Saturday, the flying robot blimp. Bear with me as I edit this post to add some much needed links and visuals.
Friday, July 10, 2009
After work, I walked over to the Metropolitan Hotel to get my badge. My kit included a schedule, a large poster, a crimson t-shirt with black Russian-propaganda style Future Ruby logo, a bottle of water, a pack of matches, a patch with the Future Ruby logo on it (for sewing on to backpacks and the like) and a TTC pass valid for the length of the convention. All of this was stuffed inside of a rugged, dark green bag with the Future Ruby patch sewn on it. This is by and far the best swag I’ve ever received at a conference, ever.
After that, I got dinner and headed down to Unspace HQ for a wicked awesome patio party. Unspace HQ seems like an incredible place to work — prime location, lots of outdoor space, and a pretty nice collection of knick knacks, including a working pinball machine — but it is also an excellent space for a party. The highlight of the night for me was seeing two CF18’s doing a fly-by. Although I’m not a huge fan of military hardware, watching the way that they turned through the air was a unique experience.
I went home early to give myself enough time to commute home and get at least 5-6 hours of sleep for the next day.
July 2nd, 2009
Last year, I attended my first computing conference ever: RubyFringe. It was really more of an “un-conference”, organized by everybody’s favourite Toronto Ruby shop, Unspace.
The whole experience was fantastic. Giles Bowkett kept us in our seats past lunch with his thought-provoking presentation which mixed his slick Ruby MIDI generator, Archaeopteryx, with a call to action so moving that we could not help rising from our seats to give him a standing ovation. Nick Sieger threw us a curveball with a presentation on the history of jazz music and how it relates to programming. RubyFringe was a weekend to remember for everybody involved.
So, I was incredibly excited when Pete Forde and Meghann Millard announced that they would be running another Ruby conference in Toronto: Future Ruby. It’s not quite meant to be a RubyFringe sequel; really, something as uniquely awesome as RubyFringe will never be replicated again. But in any case I bought my ticket almost the very moment they went on sale.
Future Ruby will be next week and I will be there. Hope to see you there too!